contact printing - keeping the neg in place : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

Hi: I'm about to contact print this year's Christmas cards, and I'll tell you my process from last time: 1) place paper, 2) place negative, 3) place glass on top 4) zap with enlarger 5) remove glass at which time 4-5 specks of dust settle on the negative, it slides off the glass, sometimes bouncing onto the floor, where I step on it, pick it up getting finger prints over the sneaker marks and grinding in the dirt, 6) repeat. I then tried putting it in a negative sleeve, and taping it to the glass but now I have 8 dust surfaces. I've tried scotch tape onto the glass, but it shows a bit.

Here's my idea, could I glue the negative onto the glass (assuming I have a second one and am willing to loose the neg after I'm done) Maybe clear nailpollish, rubber cement? then I'd be back to 2 dust surfaces and I'd stop stepping on the neg. any ideas would be greatly appreciated. Dean

-- Dean Lastoria (, November 24, 2001



Just tape the neg to the glass with Scotch tape.

-- Ken Burns (, November 24, 2001.


I use a very thin-1mm wide cut with a razor- strip of double-sided mounting tape on the very edges of the neg. Assuming it is a 4x5 neg it will have the black rebate on it anyway and that hides the tape.

Seasons Greetings

-- RICHARD ILOMAKI (, November 25, 2001.

See if you can find an old spring-back contact printing frame. Small ones like 4x5" aren't in too much demand, so they're usually pretty cheap. Maybe or eBay might be a likely source.

-- David Goldfarb (, November 25, 2001.

Spring back contact frames are great for POP(Print out paper) process papers for example, but, I have a Hama gizmo for making contacts which works just fine and really is only a hinged piece of glass onto a plastic base, paper format should be a little larger than negative(you can trim the edges later) or otrherwise you have to build a "frame" around the paper- negative combination, high enough to keep the lot in place but still thin enough to allow pressure from the glass. I am horrified at the Idea of glueing negatives on glass, but if conditions are that bad you could use tape to glue negative on glass allright( but how are you going to prevent dust onto the paper?), on the other hand, if we aren't talking 8"x10" here why don't you just use your enlarger, you surely must be able to make a 1:1 enlarging, yes contacts are better but a christmas card isn't usually of this extreme quality..........I guess.

-- andrea milano (, November 25, 2001.

I'll try the tape -- never thought of trimming it down with a razor -- makes sence though. I'd use an enlarger for them, but I've only got a 2x2 enlarger that makes a great light source (choice between 4x5 enlarger and 8x10 camera, I chose the camera -- at it's best photograpy is a contact sport). Thanks for the help, there just doesn't seem to be much info on contact anywhere, so all your ideas are most apreciated. Dean

-- Dean Lastoria (, November 25, 2001.

How about the archival mounting corners stuck to the glass??? It would be simple to change the negatives... -Dave

-- Dave Richhart (, November 25, 2001.

To eliminate dust wear a hat in the darkroom. 90% of the dust comes from the hair on your head.

Michael A. Smith

-- Michael A. Smith (, November 28, 2001.

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